Executive Conference Minister Position Description Finalized

Executive Conference Minister Position Description Finalized

By Tiffany Vail
Associate Conference Minister for Communications

The search committee for the first Executive Conference Minister for the Southern New England Conference has developed a position description - and it looks very different from those of traditional Conference Ministers.

"This position is more like a University President," said Bridge Conference Minister Rev. Marilyn Kendrix, who is staffing the committee. "This is not the person going to run the day-to-day operations of the Conference."

The job description instead calls for the new Executive to be "the standard bearer for our core vision, mission and identity" and to serve as chief vision keeper, communicator and strategist.as well as the chief philanthropy officer and the public face of the Conference in the media and public square. The executive will also serve as liaison to national settings of the denomination and in ecumenical and interfaith circles.

Qualifications for the job say the person may be ordained in the United Church of Christ or in one of the UCC covenant partners, or may be a lay person who has been active in leadership within the UCC. The search committee will be working with national staff to develop a pool of potential candidates, and in addition will seek out candidates from beyond the traditional denominational search process for such a position.

The description lists the following as required qualifications:
  • Excellent communicator
  • Proven fund raiser
  • Strategic thinker
  • Connector of people
  • Seeker of common ground
  • Well versed in UCC history / polity / governance
At their meeting on Dec. 7, the Board of Directors enthusiastically approved the job description. The search committee hopes to have a candidate to bring first to the board, and then to the wider Conference via a special meeting, by fall, 2020. Details on how to apply for the position will be posted in the new year.

The new staff structure for the new Conference is still being developed, but the draft calls for having an executive for operations - separate from the Executive Conference Minister - who would oversee the operations and staff. Kendrix said dividing the duties this way acknowledges that one Conference Minister would not be able to carry out all work previously managed by three. 

The first three responsibilities listed in the Executive Conference Minister description have to do with keeping the Conference's Vision front and center, saying the Executive will do this by:
  • Serving as the chief vision keeper, such that both within and outside the Conference, it will be clear who we are and why we exist as the United Church of Christ in southern New England;
  • Serving as the chief communicator of the Conference, articulating and leading the Conference toward a theologically-informed, gospel-centered vision of God’s call for our time and place, as articulated in the Together, As One Vision Statement ;
  • Serving as the chief strategist of the Conference, assuring that the Board of Directors and lead staff continue to use the vision of the Conference to direct the activities of the Conference now and in years to come;
Read the position description here.

The members of the search committee are: Rev. Dr. Maritza Angulo de Gonzalez, Rev. Jack Perkins Davidson, Ms. Persephone Hall, Ms. Brittany LaFleur, Rev. Dr. Mary Luti, Rev. Jenn Macy, Ms. Xaniyah Sanders, Rev. Timoth Sylvia, and Rev. Chontell Washington. Rev. Marilyn Kendrix is staffing the committee.

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